14 May, 2024

Lead System Administrator - Fox Lab

  • Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre
  • Parkville VIC, Australia
Full time Data Science Information Technology

Job Description

Lead System Administrator - Fox Lab

Date:  7 May 2024
Site:  VCCC (Parkville)
Company:  Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre
Unit:  Fox Pathology Research
Division:  Cancer Research
Department:  Laboratory Research

At Peter Mac we aim to continuously improve cancer care, research and education across all cancers and for all people affected by cancer: changing lives, breaking new ground. Everything we do is underpinned by our core values, Excellence, Compassion and Innovation. Welcoming people from a wide variety of different backgrounds and experiences is critical to fostering innovation, cultivating compassion, attracting and retaining top talent and providing the best possible cancer care for our patients.




The Research Computing Facility within the Office of Cancer Research is looking for an experienced Linux System Administrator to join our team to administer and maintain a Linux Computing Environment. The successful applicant will be highly motivated, self-driven, and a team player. Candidates should either possess Red Hat System Administration certification or have extensive experience administering Red Hat systems. This dynamic and exciting full-time role will not only assist our researchers in making important discoveries in cancer prevention and treatment, but they will also directly impact our patients by providing computing services to a leading Diagnostic Pathology Service.
Applicants to this role should provide a covering letter outlining relative key skills and experience to assist us with our assessment. 


For further information about this opportunity, click Apply to be redirected to the Peter Mac Careers page where you can review the position summary. Alternatively, please contact us using the information below for a confidential discussion.

Hiring Manager: Jason Ellul
Contact Number: 03 8559 6546
Email: Jason.Ellul@petermac.org

Applications Close: 11:59 PM 21 May 2024

Position Summary

Provide high quality, effective, and innovative system administration, operational troubleshooting and ongoing continuous improvement of the Linux Environment at Peter Mac. This environment delivers computing services for research, and supports a Diagnostic Pathology Service that must meet the ISO 15189:2022 (Medical Testing) standard. Key responsibilities of the role include:

  • Leadership
  • Staff management
  • System provisioning and administration
  • Management, coordination, and implementation of software upgrades, patches and hot fixes on Linux servers
  • Security
  • Scripting and automation
  • Change management
  • System testing and validation

Enterprise Agreement

Health and Allied Services, Managers and Adminstrative Workers

Classification or Salary Range


Immunisation Risk Category

Immunisation Category C

Key Relationships

  • IMCT (Information Management & Communications Technology)
  • Researchers
  • Computational Biologists
  • Molecular Pathology Staff
  • Core Facility Staff 
  • Vendors
  • Australian Medical Research Institutes
  • Victorian Public Hospitals











Certifications, Licenses & Registrations

Very Highly Desirable:

  • Red Hat Certified System Administrator (RHCSA)


  • Red Hat Certified Engineer (RHCE)
  • Red Hat Certified Specialist in Containers


Essential Skills:

  • In depth knowledge of Linux: RedHat, CentOS, Debian, etc.
  • Understanding of security best practices and experience in implementing security measures on Linux systems
  • Hands on experience with MySQL, MariaDB and/or Postgres
  • Experience with Red Hat Satellite and Red Hat Identity Management (IPA)
  • Familiarity with VMWare, Kernel-based Virtual Machines (KVM), OpenStack, Azure, AWS and other virtualisation technologies
  • Demonstrated understanding of containerisation and virtual environments such as Docker, Podman, Singularity, Python Virtual Environments and Conda
  • Expert in Shell, Perl, and/or Python scripting
  • Familiarity with IT automation engines such as Ansible and Puppet
  • Familiarity with code repositories and associated tools such as git
  • Basic understanding and familiarity with Microsoft Windows operating systems, server platform and networking
  • Experience working with OpenSource tools and software solutions
  • Solid knowledge of protocols such as DNS, HTTP, LDAP, SMTP and SNMP
  • Extensive experience with storage protocols such as NFS, Samba and GPFS
  • A good understanding and experience working with ITIL and modern service management practices
  • Experience working with environment modules and other environment management tools such as Spack
  • A clear understanding of GPU based computing, the common tools used and their installation and/or configuration
  • Demonstrated ability to project manage
  • Strong problem solving and communication skills
  • A demonstrated capacity to lead and appropriately manage a small team with consideration to their physical and mental well being


Desirable Skills:

  • Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science or a related field
  • Experience with SLURM and/or other job scheduling solutions
  • Experience using Zabbix and/or Grafana to monitor Linux based systems 
  • Experience configuring HPC tools such as Open OnDemand
  • Experience using Confluence, Bitbucket and JIRA
  • Familiarity with R Statistical Software and Posit Workbench (formally RStudio Pro Server)
  • Experience working within Research and/or Clinical environments such as at a University, Medical Research Institute or Hospital
  • Knowledge in Bioinformatics and/or Computational Biology
  • Familiarity with Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning
  • Experience using ICT service management tools, such as Service Now, to manage service requests, incidents and change

Key Accountabilities


  • Demonstrate leadership, mentorship and supervision of staff
  • Solicit feedback collegiately to improve personal and team performance
  • Act as a formal team member
  • Identify clinical risks and mitigate issues that affect team performance
  • Seek out others, including clients of the facility, to creatively and collaboratively solve problems
  • Collaborate with cross-functional teams to design and implement Linux-based solutions that meet business needs
  • Collaborate with in-house software developers to troubleshoot and resolve software compatibility issues on Linux platforms
  • Collaborate with ICT providers to help plan requirements for supporting ICT infrastructure


Provision, maintain, administer and secure Peter Mac's Linux Environment:

  • Install, configure, and maintain Linux operating systems and related software using up to date hardening and provisioning approaches
  • Ensure systems are kept up to date and secure through regular patching and software upgrades
  • Ensure modern change management practices are consistently followed
  • Monitor system performance, troubleshoot issues, and ensure high availability and reliability of Linux-based infrastructure
  • Perform regular system backups and disaster recovery procedures to minimise data loss and maintain business continuity
  • Implement and maintain security measures to protect Linux systems from unauthorised access and ensure compliance with industry regulations and organisational policies
  • Automate system administrative tasks using scripting languages such as Ansible, Shell or Python to streamline processes and improve efficiency
  • Manage user accounts, permissions, and access controls to ensure proper system security and data integrity
  • Ensure systems are well documented


Deploy and maintain automated bioinformatics workflows for both Research and Clinical applications:

  • Document and record changes to clinical systems
  • Establish best practice processes for release, security and change management
  • Install dependancies and configure the required environments appropriately to meet the needs of the workflows and ensure the ISO 15189:2022 standard is met
  • Assist in the testing and validation of new or modified workflows to ensure data integrity is maintained
  • Troubleshoot and address any issues or failures


Maintain and administer the Linux High Performance Computing Cluster:

  • Configure, maintain and administer SLURM
  • Onboard users to the platform
  • Provide training to new users as required
  • Install and maintain software tools and packages required by the users of the platform
  • Help administer the parallel file system (GPFS) used by our cluster
  • Provide and maintain user guides and documentation

Key Accountabilities (Contd..)

Service delivery:

  • Ensure service requests are actioned within standard SLAs and in a timely manner
  • Ensure incidents and issues are resolved promptly and root causes are identified and addressed
  • Provide technical advice and support to our users and collaborators
  • Ensure downtimes of our systems are kept to a minimum


Project Management:

  • Ensure projects are appropriately managed to ensure delivery times are met
  • Delegate work effectively
  • Monitor progress and track roadblocks
  • Manage documentation and reports such Solution Architecture Designs (SAD)
  • Coordinate with end users and ensure communication is maintained


Capacity Management:

  • Monitor systems performance and alert on high or low usage
  • Maintain system configuration to ensure optimum performance
  • Regularly report on system capacity usage, quarterly or as needed
  • Work with management and stakeholders to forecast capacity needs and support organisation funding and approval processes




For further information about this opportunity, click Apply to be redirected to the Peter Mac Careers page where you can review the position profile. Alternatively, please contact us for a confidential discussion.



Peter Mac requires its staff to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19. Please contact us if you would like to discuss this requirement.





  • Peter Mac offer a range of benefits which support our people both personally and professionally.
  • Our staff benefits include award winning facilities, professional development and events, a health and wellbeing program, flexible work practices and policies and financial benefits such as salary packaging.
  • We encourage applications from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, all members of the LGBTQI community and people with a disability.

Apply Now